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Author Topic: The Allhallowtide Thread 2018  (Read 3071 times)
J. Wilhelm
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« Reply #25 on: October 31, 2018, 08:50:32 pm »

So the question arises: is it possible to recover the "magic" of Samhain? Should a more Celtic version of Halloween be taught at schools? The Mexicans did it for the Aztec Day of the Dead. Why can't that be done for Samhain (within reason)?


I personally would like this, but as usual, the southern half of the world does things it's own way, and Samhain down here is 6 months in advance (or behind, depending on how you look at it) so still would not coordinate with the northern half of the world. It is primarily kept as a solitary or small group private event.

That's right. Samhain is specifically a fall festival. To hold on these dates of October, you must keep to the Christian Allhallowtide. But by way of symmetry, should the weather not be similar to the fall in the northern hemisphere?

Well, that would be autumn, and technically that would be the 1st of February. However, Samhain is the season of winter, and begins on the 1st of May - 31 July in the southern hemisphere. The other seasons follow: Imbolc, Spring 1st August - 31 October; Beltane, Summer 1st November - 31st January; and Lughnasadh, Autumn, 1st February - 30 April.

Given the way the climate is changing, these "seasons" can be variable down here - we had about 2 weeks of Spring and are rapidly sliding into full blown Summer - it is forecast to be 37oC tomorrow, and fire bans and restrictions will come into force as we move into "Fire Season"!

37C definitely is not costume weather!
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J. Wilhelm
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« Reply #26 on: October 31, 2018, 08:52:12 pm »

JW, you keep saying "diseased." Do you mean "deceased," or have I misunderstood the point of Day of the Dead?

Ha, ha! No, it's my smartphone in denial resurrecting the dead!  Cheesy Will manually correct!



EDIT: Corrected.

To make it up to you, here, have some Avocado Cream Soup with Chicken and Achiote (Annato) I made last night. It won't kill, you or make you sick... I promise!  Roll Eyes

« Last Edit: October 31, 2018, 08:59:38 pm by J. Wilhelm » Logged
J. Wilhelm
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« Reply #27 on: October 31, 2018, 09:46:17 pm »

Just had to post this straight from the Mexico's National University Twitter account: Aztec Simpson's Family  Cheesy

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Melrose
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« Reply #28 on: November 01, 2018, 10:18:09 am »

For a while now friends and I have haunted a local coffee shop and randomly turning up in costume. Yesterday I threw on a softly steamy Van Helsing style. In fact it was more than steamy - as pointed out earlier it's been warm here, and yesterday was around 33ºC (a tad over 90ºF). Had to drink the holy water. Wink



Otherwise it was quiet. As always, nobody knocks if I am well prepared so I have plenty of chocolate I will have to find some use for.
Where's the "like" button for J. Wilhelm's post, above?

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J. Wilhelm
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« Reply #29 on: November 01, 2018, 05:49:46 pm »

For a while now friends and I have haunted a local coffee shop and randomly turning up in costume. Yesterday I threw on a softly steamy Van Helsing style. In fact it was more than steamy - as pointed out earlier it's been warm here, and yesterday was around 33ºC (a tad over 90ºF). Had to drink the holy water. Wink



Otherwise it was quiet. As always, nobody knocks if I am well prepared so I have plenty of chocolate I will have to find some use for.
Where's the "like" button for J. Wilhelm's post, above?


Love the garlic necklace  Grin
Very good costume!
« Last Edit: November 01, 2018, 05:51:41 pm by J. Wilhelm » Logged
Miranda.T
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« Reply #30 on: November 02, 2018, 12:56:20 am »

(snip)

It's an irony that the aesthetocs (if not the ritual) are now exploding in the English speaking world.

(snip)

That is very true. We've just come back from Disneyland Paris and one section of the park (Frontierland) was for the most part styled as the day of the dead (and thus extending the interest from not just the English speaking world but French too).

For a while now friends and I have haunted a local coffee shop and randomly turning up in costume. Yesterday I threw on a softly steamy Van Helsing style. In fact it was more than steamy - as pointed out earlier it's been warm here, and yesterday was around 33ºC (a tad over 90ºF). Had to drink the holy water. Wink



Otherwise it was quiet. As always, nobody knocks if I am well prepared so I have plenty of chocolate I will have to find some use for.
Where's the "like" button for J. Wilhelm's post, above?



Very nice - vampires beware!

Yours,
Miranda.

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J. Wilhelm
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« Reply #31 on: November 02, 2018, 05:31:34 am »

Right at midnight (6AM for you in the UK?) the spirits are supposed to traverse the void from the Underworld to visit Middle Earth (quite literally according to ancient religion). I have made a small impromptu "ofrenda" for my grandparents, great grandparents and great great grandparents (not much food, I figure the dead don't eat much).

Brie cheese for my grandmother which was her favourite. Her mother, Anna, the little girl in the pictures, was my great grandmother, in turn the youngest daughter of the newly-wed couple shown, Monsieur Albert and Madame Alphonsine Levy (nee Guerrier) circa 1890, before they came to Mexico City. Little Anna was the owner of the metronome which I still have and show in the pictures.

Cherry pie for my grandfather who had a sweet tooth to rival Homer Simpson. I found a mini loaf of Pan de Muertos as well. No marigolds, though. I goofed up there.

(Right click to zoom)






JW

(Hang tight for my next post)
« Last Edit: November 02, 2018, 05:33:35 am by J. Wilhelm » Logged
J. Wilhelm
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« Reply #32 on: November 02, 2018, 08:03:46 am »

(snip)

It's an irony that the aesthetocs (if not the ritual) are now exploding in the English speaking world.

(snip)


That is very true. We've just come back from Disneyland Paris and one section of the park (Frontierland) was for the most part styled as the day of the dead (and thus extending the interest from not just the English speaking world but French too).
*snip*


I hadn't seen the Pixar movie Coco, but one of my roomates was watching it. It was impressively colourful and did carry a lot of the flavour and details of the holiday.

Again, the Day of the Dead is not a wealthy man's custom. This is primarily a native custom that folded into Christianity and is most visible in those townships where there is a stronger Native background. The @KineticKennons have been putting a series of videos, and I seem to have misunderstood - they actually did leave Mexico City on Saturday toward the State of Michoacan to look for the Day of the Dead traditions in the more rural towns.

Because the videos are being posted one or two days after the fact, the videos still are only showing preparations. But they have gone past the little town of Patzcuaro (a video I skipped because it hardly showed anything relevant - it was too early prior to the holiday), and in the video below they visited the preparations at the cemeteries of a little town called Tzintzuntzan (if the name doesn’t sound Spanish it's because it isn't - this is a Purepecha Native-Mexican name - it means "Place of the hummingbirds"). The video below shows how the  town is decorating  the cemeteries for the Day of the Dead.

By the way, each town in Mexico has a particular artistic speciality like for example pottery, or metal-working. These were trades that were taught to the Native during the Spanish conquest, and so the trades were passed down from generation to generation. In Tzintzuntzan the trade is basket weaving from "panikua" wheat stalk, and the town is famous for making Christmas ornaments.


On Midnight Oct 31 it is believed the spirits of the children will come down to visit. On midnight November 1 (right now for me) it is the adults who come down to visit the land of the living. This video was done early yesterday, prior to the night when the "ofrendas" are made for the children:

Visiting the Tzintzuntzan Cemetery
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Melrose
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« Reply #33 on: November 02, 2018, 10:44:08 am »


Love the garlic necklace  Grin
Very good costume!

Thank you! Cheesy Plastic garlic from a costume shop. They do express deliveries on short notice - and the costume was a last minute idea. They also provided the plastic crucifix. The vials of holy water in my cartridge belt were repurposed plastic bottles for glitter, and the stakes were a garden stake cut in halves. The flintlock (which is possibly invisible) and the rest was from my wardrobe.
It isn't lost on me that while I was wearing plastic, others were making ofrendas! The living got a laugh though.
« Last Edit: November 02, 2018, 10:46:30 am by Melrose » Logged
J. Wilhelm
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« Reply #34 on: November 02, 2018, 11:59:25 pm »

Midnight November 1-2. The Night of the Dead. The @KineticKennons went back to lake town of Patzcuaro and *squeezed* their way through to the tiny lake island of Janitzio, which seems to be hosting thousands upon thousands of people. I skipped the last video because there was nothing to show, but Janitzio is basically a tiny island with cemeteries and absolutely packed with houses and other buildings in the middle of Lake Patzcuaro. That is also the base for a giant statue (with a staircase through the centre), of one of Mexico's independence heroes, Jose-Maria Morelos. Janitzio and Pazcuaro seem to be some sort of Mecca for Day of the Dead pilgrims. The only other place being regarded as such would be Oaxaca.

The sacred in the cemeteries, as one expected from the decorations the day before, seemingly gave way to the mundane outside of the cemetery, as you can see in the video outright parties broke out among stands filled with food and drink. A Mexican version of the Irish wake organised for the departed? That is what it seems to me, as I had never seen that side of the ritual before.

Noche de Muertos in Janitzio, Michoacán



Love the garlic necklace  Grin
Very good costume!


Thank you! Cheesy Plastic garlic from a costume shop. They do express deliveries on short notice - and the costume was a last minute idea. They also provided the plastic crucifix. The vials of holy water in my cartridge belt were repurposed plastic bottles for glitter, and the stakes were a garden stake cut in halves. The flintlock (which is possibly invisible) and the rest was from my wardrobe.
It isn't lost on me that while I was wearing plastic, others were making ofrendas! The living got a laugh though.


Very well done, even if plastic. Yes, that sort of was the complaint from the teachers, if you had been a hisghschooler at an upper class private school in Mexico City diring the 1980s. The Day of the Dead ritual was all but forgotten by then, among the upper classes, who by ethnicity had less of a connection to the ritual and thus opted for Halloween costumes and paraphernalia (more European, many non-Spanish or mixed non-Spanish plus Spanish like me).

But as you can see in the video even during the Night of the Dead you still have a party. There have been comments made to the Kennons that "Day of the Dead id not a party" and yet if you see the video in the tiny island of Janitzio, that is exactly what is happening. It sort of reminds me of an Irish wake. Sacred or Profane?

I think the answer lies in that the Day of the Dead is an event where you *commune* with the dead. Since family reunions usually involve a party atmosphere, food and drink, it makes sense this behavior would carry over to the Night of the Dead, when the departed are supposed to be with you.

« Last Edit: November 03, 2018, 12:45:46 am by J. Wilhelm » Logged
Melrose
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« Reply #35 on: November 04, 2018, 04:26:39 am »

I think the answer lies in that the Day of the Dead is an event where you *commune* with the dead. Since family reunions usually involve a party atmosphere, food and drink, it makes sense this behavior would carry over to the Night of the Dead, when the departed are supposed to be with you.


That sums up my own impressions; those now gone are invited to stay part of family life.
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« Reply #36 on: November 09, 2018, 08:37:01 pm »

Just one notable thought...Why was that little boy so disappointed to find that the decorations weren't real corpses?
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J. Wilhelm
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« Reply #37 on: November 09, 2018, 10:25:23 pm »

Just one notable thought...Why was that little boy so disappointed to find that the decorations weren't real corpses?

Ha, ha! Which little boy?
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walking stick
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« Reply #38 on: November 10, 2018, 11:54:15 am »

I had a few groups of local Trick or Treaters and one little boy asked if the skeleton parts I'd set up were from real dead bodies. His mother told him they were plastic and he asked me too I said "Plastic keeps better." he just gave a disappointed sound.
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